I know we haven’t even gotten through Halloween yet, so it might seem crazy to start talking about Christmas shipping. But you know, once Halloween hits, Thanksgiving and Christmas seem to be right behind. Since this has been such a crazy year, trends are showing people are more eager to enjoy the comfort and celebration of holidays this year, but many have also experienced financial loss due to closures so money is tighter. It’s not too early to start thinking about Christmas and how to save on Christmas shopping this year.
Some people plan for Christmas all year long, setting aside a careful budget each month and picking up gifts when they see them on sale in stores (and hope the recipient doesn’t buy it for themselves too). Maybe you are someone who needs a little more support sticking to a Christmas budget. In case you haven’t started your shopping, I am excited to share my best last-minute Christmas shopping hacks to help you save money this season.
1.) Download the FLIPP app
This app is so convenient! It allows you to search the items that you are looking for and find the best deals in all the stores across your area. So for example, one Christmas I was looking for the Barbie Glamper Van which was big on my daughter’s wish list. With the Flipp app, I was able to use the search feature, and it gave me the results of all the stores in my area as well as some online sites. I could easily compare prices and make my decision of where I could get it easily and at the best price.
This single app saves me SO much time because I am not searching all the individual websites or running to all the different stores trying to price match. Flipp lets me know the price right away. I can decide if I have coupons for particular stores too, and how that calculates into the final price.
2. ) Buy Gift Cards
I recommend you buy gift cards for the stores where you know you are going to be doing your Christmas shopping. This is a great tip if the store gives you bonus points or gas points for purchases. My local Price Chopper offers five times the gas points when you buy gift cards; the second grocery store in my area gives a bonus $10 gift card for every $50 in gift cards purchased.
If I know I’m going to be making a big purchase somewhere, I will stock up on gift cards I purchased at Price Chopper and earn myself a few free tanks of gas in the process. I’m saving on things I am going to be buying anyway.
3.) Get the Target Red Card
You have to check out Target’s deals, especially on gift cards. This may not be a gift so much for someone else, but maybe it will help you keep your budget low and in check. How? The Target Red Card gives you 5% off your purchase, so it’s like money.
When you buy gift cards at Target for things like Netflix or Disney. If you buy a Netflix card, you are getting the 5% off and you can apply the gift card to your own account, so you are saving money on your bill. Also, if you are planning a Disney vacation, use your Target Red Card to buy Disney Vacation cards.
4. ) Download Your Receipts
My favorite of all of these is the Fetch app. If you sign up using my link, you get 2,000 bonus points just for starting. I use this app after my grocery shopping when I am Christmas shopping and more. You earn points for everything, but if you purchase the brands listed, you get even more points. Once you’ve accumulated points, you can redeem them on gift cards or other things like sweepstakes or magazine subscriptions. But I like receiving gift cards the most!
5.) Amazon Returns
Did you know if you buy the wrong thing from Amazon, you don’t have to pack it up and mail it back to Amazon? This can take a lot of time: finding a box, packing it up, and driving to the post office. Instead, you can return the item to a store local to you, like Kohls.
This is so much easier! All you have to do is prepare the Amazon receipt and bring it to Kohls. They will return it right there and give you your money back on the spot.
6.) Price Adjustments
I really suggest saving your receipts anyway when purchasing gifts in case something needs to be returned. But another hack for how to save on your Christmas shopping is to watch for price adjustments. If the price drops lower than what you paid (usually within 14 – 30 days), you can bring back your receipt and get the difference back.
I have found this tip to be super helpful. This can even happen after Christmas when a lot of things go on sale or clearance.
7.) Use Swagbucks
If you do your Christmas shopping online, I really recommend going through a website like Swagbucks. This is so simple to do: go to the Swagbucks website, enter the store through their portal (instead of just going to the site directly), and shop like normal.
You can earn bonus points in addition to the points you earn on purchases. Swagbucks gives you cash back when you trade the points in for gift cards.
With 4 kids, I have learned the best, simple ways to save on Christmas shopping. I have another helpful post about how to stay within your Christmas budget here.
Looking for more ways to have a debt-free Christmas? Sign up for my 30-day challenge running the month of November. You can get all the details delivered to your inbox PLUS an invite to the exclusive Facebook group, sign up here.